Ecological assets are at the core of every nation's long-term wealth. Yet today, population growth and consumption patterns are putting more pressure on our planet's ecosystems, as seen in water shortages, reduced cropland productivity, deforestation, biodiversity loss, fisheries collapse and climate change. Ecological Footprint accounting compares how much demand human consumption places on the biosphere (Ecological Footprint) to the area, or supply, of productive land available to meet this demand (biocapacity). Both Footprint and biocapacity are measured in global hectares. Footprint accounting exposes the unique risks and opportunities that natural resource constraints pose to each nation.

All Ecological Footprint and biocapacity data is for 2012

Ecological Deficit/Reserve

An ecological deficit occurs when the Ecological Footprint of a population exceeds the biocapacity of the area available to that population. A national ecological deficit means that the nation is importing biocapacity through trade, liquidating national ecological assets or emitting carbon dioxide waste into the atmosphere. An ecological reserve exists when the biocapacity of a region exceeds its population's Ecological Footprint.

BIOCAPACITY CREDITORS
Biocapacity greater than Footprint

  • >150%

  • 100% - 150%

  • 50% - 100%

  • 50% - 0%

BIOCAPACITY DEBTORS
Footprint greater than biocapacity

  • >150%

  • 100% - 150%

  • 50% - 100%

  • 50% - 0%

COUNTRIES WITH BIOCAPACITY RESERVE

Percentage that biocapacity exceeds Ecological Footprint

COUNTRIES WITH BIOCAPACITY DEFICIT

Percentage that Ecological Footprint exceeds biocapacity

x
Population (2012)
Ecological Footprint
per capita
Biocapacity
per capita
BIOCAPACITY
CREDIT(+)/DEFICIT(-)

Ecological Footprint and Biocapacity
From 1961 to 2012

Ecological Footprint
Biocapacity
Data Sources: National Footprint Accounts 2016 (Data Year 2012); World Development Indicators, The World Bank (2016); U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization.